Posted on Dec 5, 2016
SGT Dave Tracy
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I like to play a little game with my Retention NCOIC each month. He has me on his list & scouts around for me; in turn I 3D him (duck, dodge & dive not distance, direction & description). He got me this month because sometimes he gets lucky. I’m not looking to reup, but in passing he informs me I can reenlist into the IRR. Really? How’s that work? What’s the benefits to the Army? To me?
Edited >1 y ago
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SFC Stephen Pate
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How it works: You reenlist for 3-6 years (you can't go indef yet), and at the end of your current obligation you transfer to the IRR. New contract begins the day after your ETS.

Benefit to you: You keep a minimal amount of benefits (PX and MWR), accrue time in service and time in grade, get membership points, and reassignment to TPU doesn't require MEPS.

Benefit to the service: They can call you up for AD at any time, and it's easy to reassign you back to TPU.

Please don't play games with us Sarge, we have to report this stuff to our higher. Just stop in the office at drill and say, "still not reenlisting".
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COL Vincent Stoneking
COL Vincent Stoneking
>1 y
CPT Carlos Santillan - especially with the latest changes to the program. The not being able to take an APFT unless on active duty slays me.

https://www.hrc.army.mil/content/Individual%20Ready%20Reserve%20Homepage
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LtCol William Bentley
LtCol William Bentley
4 y
COL Vincent Stoneking - Unless HRC policies prohibit it, you should be able to ask for nonpaid appropriate duty orders from the IRR, at the minimum. The link provided did not explicitly specify APFT was barred unless on ACDU. Of course the USAR wants you to commit and join TPU, or if not, then from the IRR beg either an AC or RC unit to accept you and then commit yourself, essentially, to their training schedule...for retirement points only. A good idea in theory, but it will likely fail in execution: "Who is this "Jones" guy on the rolls?" "A what, a RESERVE lieutenant colonel is on my rolls, what is he doing, who is he, where is he?" OR, "Wow, Stoneking/Bentley/etc., is senior in rank to me...perhaps awkward even though I"m the CO..."
There is also such a thing as nonpaid active duty for RC members, just have to ask for it. And then convince someone who knows Deep Magic to figure out how to do it and authorize it...Cheers, WKB!
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LtCol William Bentley
LtCol William Bentley
4 y
CPT Carlos Santillan - While not likely anyone's first choice, upon reflection, the honor of performing Funeral Honor Duty during funeral details for our fallen brothers and sisters is available to anyone in the Ready Reserve: Selected Reserve and IRR can perform FHD, maximum of one period per calendar day, with a minimum of 2 hours of actual duty, with possibility of travel pay if the funeral is performed outside the reasonable commuting distance from the reservist's home, for 1 reserve retirement point per FHD performed, and one day's basic pay (just like any other period of inactive duty with pay).

Unlike all other forms of inactive duty points, FHD are not limited to the 130 points per fiscal year cap; one could perform a FHD every day of the year, and receive 365 reserve retirement points, and 365 days' basic pay. Of course, that means performing 365 funerals a year.

FHD are not "IDT" Inactive Duty for Training...they are a special, Congressionally-mandated subcategory known as "Inactive Duty." (Only FHD and Muster Duty for members of the IRR's annual muster fall into this category.)

One FHD can be performed in a day, and one other type of IDT (any other type, paid or nonpaid) can also be credited in the same day (maximum of 2 periods of IDT/ID are creditable in the same calendar day).

FHD is the only type of inactive duty that can be performed for pay while a member of the IRR. (Muster duty pay is technically a per diem, not pay.)

Members of the Standby Reserve could perform FHD, but not be paid (although they might be eligible for the VSO Partnership program so their travel expenses were paid).

Retirees and veterans can also perform Funeral Honors, but only through the VSO Partnership program, with travel regulations and reimbursement only (no retirement credit or basic pay).
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LtCol William Bentley
LtCol William Bentley
4 y
COL Vincent Stoneking - LTC Stoneking, I am admittedly a retired USMCR officer answering for HRC...but I was the USMCR equivalent of AGR (we call it "Active Reserve" or AR, just to be different than everyone else -- AGR, MilTech, FTS, RPA) for my last 15 years and spent several years in both IRR and Selected Reserve before that in between periods of AC service...so I know a few things, but those things might not be 100% right for the USAR, ARNG, etc.

On a separate RP thread, I recall an interesting discussion with a now-retired USAR Colonel about the way the USAR is trying to deliberately "thin the herd" so to speak with the USAR IRR...the thinking goes: "Either join a USAR or ARNG Selected Reserve (TPU) unit, or find an IMA billet in the Selected Reserve, retire, resign, separate at end of contract, or at worst stay in the IRR but do one of the above things ASAP...because we're coming for you!"

This is scary for me, because I firmly believe(d) in the Operational Reserve, and the IRR can be a vibrant part of that -- when managed and resourced properly.

But the USMCR lost interest in their own IRR by about 2009 or so when the "surge" of new Marines in the AC grew from c. 190K to 212K...thus, why bother with a bunch of "weird" guys in this thing called the IRR...it's not natural anyway to call them up...

So I'm not surprised that the USAR has made it increasingly difficult to remain in the IRR, enforcing all manner of picky little rules, forcing decisions on retirements and resignations earlier than in the past, encouraging/forcing soldiers to volunteer to be "associated" (not sure the exact USAR term) with an AC or RC unit while remaining in the IRR, and then participating in that unit's activities from time to time, but without pay -- for reserve retirement points only.

Now, there is nothing wrong with participating for points only. That has ALWAYS been an option, from the dawn of the current reserve retirement system in the late 1940's, and before that participation with the reserves was usually without pay...and without a defined retirement plan at all! Just did it for fun or to stay with friends, or maybe a contractual obligation after ROTC, etc. Only active duty (and not always even then if the period was short and not a mobilization) was paid, i.e., "2 week summer camps."

But when the IRR policies force participation, without pay for the most part, the boundaries between Selected Reserve and IRR have become blurred. The IRR is necessary as a buffer spring and space between AC and SelRes and the next steps on the mobilization/recall scale (which generally are beginning to recall retirees, the Standby Reserve, and thinking hard about whether there will be a need in the future for a return to the draft...), and this includes breathing space for those who are temporarily between billets in the SelRes (Units and IMA), and whatever is next whether that is another SelRes billet, retirement, resignation, a full length school, transfer between Components (AC/RC, USAR/ARNG, etc.).

I see that now the USAR IRR refuses to credit reserve retirement points for correspondence courses. Having myself benefited from many such points through ACCP back in the day, I find this troubling as well. And it will make earning qualifying reserve retirement years even harder...15 membership points for free, but to make a qualifying year need 50. And after a reservist has 20 qualifying years for reserve retirement, by statute they MUST earn 50 points every year thereafter or be involuntarily retired or transferred to the Standby Reserve (which is usually a one way ticket to nowhere except retirement). So the USAR IRR now coerces members to associate themselves under orders (in the USMCR we call it "Associate Duty Orders") with an AC or RC unit, and drill with that unit for points only to earn at least the other 35 points each year.

But I'm fairly certain that there are still many hidden nooks and crannies in the HRC manuals that are used to manage the IRR for things like:

1. Funeral Honors Duty - FHDs are paid Inactive Duty that even IRR can perform, minimum 2 hours participation on a calendar day, one reserve retirement point per FHD, can be combined with any other type of inactive duty for training for a maximum of 2 points per day, is paid for those in the SelRes or IRR at the same rate as a normal drill, i.e., one day's basic pay, and is exempt from the usual cap on reserve retirement points in a year so you could theoretically perform one per day every day of the year and earn 365 days of basic pay and 365 reserve retirement points...Reserve units usually coordinate these with funeral honors details, along with participation by VSOs such as American Legion and VFW at funerals for vets.

2. "Appropriate duty orders" for such things as assisting with recruiting, local JROTC at a high school, Senior ROTC at a college, even such things as Sea Cadets, Young Marines, the Army equivalent of the Naval Academy's "Blue and Gold" screening teams for potential Academy candidates, the local board of the Selective Service System (uniformed can't join the local draft boards, but can do other things to assist the SSS in their functions), going to professional conferences (in uniform of course!), acting as adjunct faculty at a local military school (regional US Army Cmd and Staff sites, ARNG OCS courses, etc.).

3. Appropriate duty orders (and thus up to 2 points per calendar day, for 4 hours per point of work) are also the way to perform ANY required military duty that isn't otherwise paid by active duty orders or IDT drills/battle assemblies. So a dental or medical appointment to meet an IRR or USAR requirement should be compensated via a reserve retirement point (using appropriate duty orders authorized in advance). And I would include in this any type of military training, authorized by orders in advance, such as running APFT, marksmanship (say shooting in a local leg match for NRA distinguished points, or with the commander's permission shooting whatever weapons they are shooting that day borrowing weapons/time/ammo through advance coordination and preauthorization using the appropriate duty orders). I used to tell my reservists to never do anything "military" without the orders...thus they would get reserve retirement points (but no pay, which was usually a novel and not particularly pleasant concept for those indoctrinated in AC and SelRes participation where you always got paid...but non-paid participation is a very necessary and deep-rooted construct in the IRR even today) for their activity AND would be covered for medical coverage in case something happened like a heart attack while running APFT (it's happened...), shot in a foot or hit by ricochet while shooting, etc. Have to be on authorized orders before the activity begins, and before the injury, to get the protection...

But without correspondence course points, the bar just went way up!

Cheers, LtCol Will Bentley
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MSG Area Leader
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When you are 90 days out from ETS you can reenlist into the IRR. The effective date would be the day after current ETS. I've executed two of these contracts for soldiers in the reserves.
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MSG Area Leader
MSG (Join to see)
>1 y
COL (Join to see) -Sir, by reenlisting into the IRR it keeps them from having to go through MEPS to come back into the reserves. It just takes a DA 4187 (enlisted) or DA 4651 (officer) and a copy of their photo ID to bring them back to an active drilling status.
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COL Health Services Plans, Ops, Intelligence, Security,Training
COL (Join to see)
>1 y
MSG (Join to see) - I like that process. Although I just retired, the old process was a transition to RC/NG, then a separate request to IRR/ING. It is interesting to see a reenlistment to the IRR from AC. The downside is that transitioning from AC to an RC unit can actually assist in the transition process (social and professional network, sense of stability, member of a team, etc.).
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MSG Area Leader
MSG (Join to see)
>1 y
COL (Join to see) - I'm not sure about reenlisting into the IRR from the active component. I'm a 79V, Army Reserve Career Counselor on AGR.
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COL Health Services Plans, Ops, Intelligence, Security,Training
COL (Join to see)
>1 y
MSG (Join to see) - I would suspect that if the option is available for RC, then it is available for AC as well.
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MSG Mechanic 2nd
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IRR no nco schooling, no mos schooling, you can however volunteer for duty at your convienence for support missions, I did this back in 2003 my career counsellor contacted me had a great mission, 2 weeks in Hawaii, med support in hilo, it was awesome
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SGT Dave Tracy
SGT Dave Tracy
>1 y
Cool.
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